Education - Schools

Andalucia offers both state and private school systems. © iStock
Andalucia offers both state and private school systems.

Schools in Andalucia

by Brenda Padilla

Education is a primary concern for families relocating to Spain.

For many children and young people, arriving in Spain and starting at a new school can be daunting at first, especially with a new language to learn.

Andalucia offers a complete state school system from three to 18 years - three to five years is Infantil; six to 12 years Primaria; 12 to 18 Secundaria (ESO and Bacillerato)  complemented by Spanish private schools throughout the region, as well as numerous international schools primarily in Málaga, Cádiz, Granada and Seville.


International Schools

International schools range from a purely British or American programme to the Spanish curriculum but with an enphasis on English language. More >

Nursery Schools

Children can start nursery (guarderia) at 4 months, and they can stay up to 3 years, when they move onto school. More > More >

State Schools

An overview of state schools and enrolement procedures. More >

Hours & Holidays

The academic year runs from the second week in September to the third week of June. More >

After School

After school activities for children to develop further. More >


As you shop for an international school you will find a wide array of accreditations. More >

International Schools

Over 30 international schools serve Andalucia with a variety of national curriculums, such as British, French and German, and, in the case of secondary schools, international diplomas such as the Baccalaureat. Find here information about International Schools in Andalucia.

You can also learn more about the different accreditations that international schools in Andalucia seek to obtain. It is helpful to distinguish those that are mainly useful in terms of marketing and those that genuinely certify the school meets specific education standards.




State Schools

Spanish state schools are continually undergoing dramatic change as they work to meet European standards. Read our texts describing state schools, which are divided into Infantil, Primaria and Secundaria; about school hours and holidays; and a guide to the process of enrolment in a Spanish state School. Most schools have a bilingual programme from six years old.


Some international families do choose Spanish private schools for their children. These schools offer a Spanish curriculum and focus on preparing students for national Spanish university exams. There are two main types of Spanish private schools. State-subsidised schools called “concertados” are privately owned and operated and are significantly less expensive than any other private option. On the other hand, there are many excellent, fully private Spanish schools throughout this region.

Finding the right school is very important. © Michelle Chaplow
Finding the right school is very important


In the Spanish education system, children can start nursery (guarderia) at four months, and they can stay up to three years, when they move onto school. Some areas, particularly in larger towns and cities, and especially on the Costa del Sol, have bilingual or international schools which offer nursery facilities.
Read more about nursery schools...